Category: Think Tank

Winds Ultimate Goal Educating The Public

Can embracing social media revolutionise our chances of success? Our industry is already convinced, of course – we view wind power as the panacea to saving the world. Yet in reality, the public support of ‘clean’ energy is not as absolute as the industry may hope for. One of the reasons that may cause this… Read more »

Building firm foundations for offshore

The key to building a wind farm is industrialisation: projects should be scalable and commercially viable from the bottom up. It follows that perhaps the most crucial consideration in an offshore development, solid foundations can literally make or break a project We take a look at all the critical components to present an unmissable ‘user… Read more »

Eu Launches 9 Billion Energy Infrastructure Plan

The EU executive has announced its first ever plan to use €9.1 billion from the EU’s 2014-2020 budget to help upgrade Europe’s energy infrastructure, according to strategic climate and energy needs. The money will be available under the proposed EU budget for 2014-2020 in the form of newly-minted project bonds, grants and loan guarantees, according… Read more »

Investing in a renewable future

With an economy struggling out of recession, and uncertainty over energy policy, securing investment in renewables has never been more important to the future of the industry. PES takes a look at current state of energy investment, and how wind is leading the race to secure funding for new projects. Renewable energies are expanding both… Read more »

The state of wind energy

With significant investment in wind energy, local communities and economies can enjoy a great deal of fringe benefits that stem from renewables – a secure, clean energy future is just the start. PES takes a look at the wider impacts of wind energy in Texas… Texas is a global leader in installed wind energy. If… Read more »

Wind + hybrid vehicles = a match made in renewables heaven?

As alternatives to conventional vehicles, Plug-in Hybrid Electric Vehicles (PHEVs) running off electricity stored in batteries could decrease oil consumption and reduce carbon emissions. And by using electricity derived from clean energy sources, even greater environmental benefits are obtainable. We take a look at the potential benefits arising from the widespread adoption of PHEVs in… Read more »

Thumbs Up For Canadas Largest Wind Farm

A Calgary-based company has been given the green light from provincial regulators in Alberta to construct what is expected to be the country’s largest wind energy project. The Alberta Utilities Commission has granted final approval to construct and operate the Blackspring Ridge I Wind Project which could be online as soon as 2013. PES reports… Read more »

Correct action now can lead to bright future for offshore

In this far-ranging and prescient report, Large-Scale Offshore Wind Power in the United States: Assessment of opportunities and Barriers, the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) examines the state of play for the wind industry in the US as well as examining the vital steps the continent needs to take in order to ease the pressure… Read more »

Considering rooftop PV installations

Solar PV is leads the way in terms of applicable renewable technology with demonstrable benefits. But while photovoltaics have the potential to make a significant reduction to a building’s overall energy, they also carry with them sizeable installation and application considerations. PES investigates. Building design has changed dramatically in recent years with sustainable solutions becoming… Read more »

Winds of change for UK FITs

In January this year, the British Government announced a far-reaching review of Feed-in Tariffs, which, on the face of it, seemed like bad news for the renewables industry. But dig a little deeper and you’ll find that, while large- scale PV operators are right to be up-in-arms, the review could bode well for wind… It… Read more »

My vision

Do you feel as if you are helping in some small way to make a difference to the world? It’s a question that few of us ever consider, but the very nature of our industry lends it validity. In this issue’s exclusive ‘My vision’ interview, we put this and a selection of other, more philosophical… Read more »

A Level Playing Field Are Chinas Aggressive Clean Tech Policies Undermining Us Wind Growth

One of the major selling points of wind power is that it is, by definition, clean. While that may be so, the international political climate surrounding clean technologies is gradually becoming far from clean. At the center of the debate now are the Chinese and the allegedly unfair subsidies the country’s administration gives to its… Read more »

Analysis: wind farms can boost local economies

New energy generation constitutes a major investment, often to the value of hundreds of millions or potentially billions of Euros. And such spending results in widespread economic development, in the form of increased work opportunities, higher salaries, and new customers for local business. PES examines the greater impact of channelling wind farm investment into the… Read more »

Why is Google buying into wind?

So you thought Google was just a highly successful internet search engine? The company’s energy arm recently signed a deal to buy 114 megawatts of energy from a wind farm in Iowa, marking the first deal done by the company’s energy subsidiary A Google spokesman said the company had signed a 20-year power purchase agreement… Read more »

Japan rethinks wind power

Although Europe is a vast, sprawling continent bursting with innovation, our Asian cousins are old hands at taking a sideways look at the world – as these ingenious turbines from Japan clearly illustrate. At the recent Yokohama Renewable Energy Exhibition, Japanese technology threw-up some exciting developments for the sector, including this revolutionary turbine system that… Read more »

PV Goes Greener Triple Green

‘Triple Green’ is the new motto in photovoltaics: the drive to produce modules that generate clean energy, that are recycled and – what’s more – ecologically produced. It’s an effective way for the solar industry to further boost its image and sustainably cut costs. However, this perfect triad is difficult to implement because “green factories”… Read more »

Introducing Print-on-Print to the solar industry

A progressive process that has nevertheless been utilised in other industries for several years, Print-on-Print involves the printing of one conductor grid directly on top of a previously printed and dried grid. PES asked acknowledged pioneers DEK for an in-depth explanation of this revolutionary procedure. A simple Internet search will reveal that the photovoltaics industry… Read more »

Mixed prospects for European PV industry

The recently-published European Photovoltaics Industry Association (EPIA) Global Market Outlook for Photovoltaics from 2010 to 2014 is a key publication for the PV sector. Here PES publishes an exclusive extract … The EPIA Global Market Outlook for Photovoltaics (PV) from 2010 to 2014 is based on an internal analysis of market data from industry members,… Read more »

A glimpse into the future

Ever wondered what effect our efforts to limit global warming to two degrees will have on the European economy and labour market by 2050? A new study by the Fraunhofer Institute for Systems and Innovation Research (ISI) provides some illuminating answers. Klaus Jacob, Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft As demonstrated most recently by events in Copenhagen, international climate conferences… Read more »

Squeezing more out of modules

Many industries have, not surprisingly, attempted to talk themselves out of the global downturn, but very few have the statistics to back up their optimism. Thankfully, the PV industry is one of this select few. And it seems as if module production is leading the charge… Last year, PV panel makers and their suppliers were… Read more »

Testing times for thin-film?

Thin-film is apparently coming under pressure despite the knowledge is that modules made from thin-film silicon can be manufactured more cost-effectively than thick crystalline ones. It seems that the technology is trailing far behind its efficiency and cost objectives, whereas crystalline innovations are developing at a greater pace. PES investigates. Sunfilm and Signet Solar have… Read more »

Catching the wind with laser technology

The wind industry could soon be using a new type of innovative technology that has more to do with lasers than ecology. A new laser system that can be mounted on wind turbines allows them to prepare for the wind rushing toward their blades. These lasers act like sonar for the wind, bouncing off microscopically… Read more »

Report claims China is putting the squeeze on US wind-power market

American companies are being squeezed out of the lucrative Chinese wind-power market at the same time as Dallas-based investors are bringing Chinese firms to the US via a big wind farm project in Texas, according to a new industry report. PES examines a potentially-damaging situation. The study examines Chinese government policies promoting the development of… Read more »

Keep on watching the skies

Wind turbines are on the up. The giant constructions are constantly getting taller because, as every schoolboy knows, the higher you get off the ground, the greater the wind speeds. But building big towers is a costly business, especially if you want one 15,000ft tall. So why not ditch the tower and make the windmill… Read more »

Wind turbines are on the up.

The Tin Man in the Wizard of Oz fretted over his joints, and owners of wind turbines have the same angst. They need to be assembled offshore and maintenance of the joints is critical where a 20+ year life expectancy under the buffeting of winter seas and gusting storms is normal. The assembly is subject… Read more »

Rise of the PV robots

With cost cutting in mind, the photovoltaics industry increasingly relies on automation, expecting it to bring about sustained high product quality and increased productivity. PES explains all. Industrial robots feed and discharge solar cell production lines and sort the finished components by pick-and-place processes. They handle glass panes, cut films and foils and assemble frames… Read more »

Solar power takes to the skies, seas and land

PES takes a look at three state-of the-art modes of transport which could help facilitate an energy-efficient future and help conserve the increasingly limited natural resources of the planet. SkiesSome 110 years after the much-celebrated Wright Brothers designed and flew their first aircraft, the age of solar fight has finally arrived. The ghosts of Wilbur… Read more »

Power wastage? The answer, my friend, is storing the wind

Bob Dylan told us the answer to the world’s political problems was blowing in the wind, Donovan memorably failed to catch the wind and now a professor of Dynamics at England’s Nottingham University wants us to store the wind. Seamus Garvey of the Midlands-based university’s Department of Mechanical, Materials and Manufacturing Engineering, believes the future… Read more »

Developing a strong skill base will be critical if Europe is to compete in the global renewable market

Expansion of the global renewable energy market is set to continue increasing despite the current economic situation, forming a fundamental part of how many countries will meet their post-Kyoto targets. The ability to up-skill and transfer knowledge at a European level is going to be critical to meet this expected demand and to successfully compete… Read more »